Coral Frag Plugs
Updated: Jul 24, 2021
I didn't think too much of frag plugs when I first started out. There was no need for them. All the corals I bought came on huge chunks of rocks so frags never came into the picture until after about a year into the hobby when I started buying frags from fellow reefers.
I like the look of a coral fully encrusted over the frag plug. Especially those that cover not only the top but have even spilled over onto the sides of the plug. To me, they look to be in the middle of a growth spurt and all I had to do was leave them in my tank and they will take off without any special care.
Compared to the frags plugs that I now have, the first frag plug that I ever used had a relatively large mounting surface. Let's call this frag plug Type 1.
It worked for me at the time. My tank was getting decent growth so I began fragging a bit from each coral and mounted each piece neatly on frag plugs. As I went along, I came to realize that if only the mounting surface (see pic below) was of a slightly smaller diameter, I could pack more frags within the same amount of space.
It didn't take me long to find a frag plug with a smaller diameter but I didn't place an order because I had bought so many of Type 1 and I wanted to use most of them up before buying more. Eventually, the time came for me to buy the second type of plugs and it was as if I was stupid and didn't learn my lesson because I placed a huge order for them. Enter 500pcs of Type 2!! 🥴
Type 2 had a smaller diameter which allowed me to pack more frags but there was a problem. The plugs got flipped over easily. It usually happened when my fishes pick algae off the plugs but other times when my sea cucumber or abalone "walk" over them. I had this problem with Type 1 but it was fairly uncommon. I think it happened so much more with Type 2 because it was just too light. I was picking up frags that have fallen off about once every one or two days. I didn't mind that because it gave me an excuse to spend more time with my corals but sometimes a frag falls off and lands on another coral and they "fight". If I discover this in time, when both frags still have living tissue then all I had to do was place them in isolated places and they will recover. But sometimes I don't, or when one of the two corals is of a particularly aggressive type, then I would lose one of them. I wanted to use a better frag plug. One that could let me pack frags efficiently and not get flipped over easily. Eventually I found my answer.
Type 3 has a small surface diameter and a thick peg. The thick peg holds the plug in place even when the fishes pick on the algae. Once in a long while, a fish will dislodge the frag plug but it happens so rarely that I don't remember the last time it happened. I have been using it for more than 6 months and still no complaints.
Please share your experiences with me. If you know of any special alien tech frag plugs, message me on IG because I would love to try it out.